Mardi Gras 101
It’s that time of year again down in New Orleans. Mardi Gras – the time for beads, tiny hats, and great parades through the streets. Mardi Gras began back in January this year, but the big parades start on February 15th and will end on March 5th. So, if you’re planning to partake in the celebrations, here are a few quick facts and tips.
Mardi Gras is a Christian tradition originally practiced in France. The purpose was to celebrate the time before Lent by eating meat and other rich foods before fasting. Mardi Gras ends on the tuesday before Ash Wednesday – known as Fat Tuesday. This year, Fat Tuesday is March 5th.
Mardi Gras is celebrated all over the city.The most crowded, festive area is Canal Street, with the most partying happening in the French Quarter. If you’re looking for a family friendly experience, you’ll want to stay in Uptown New Orleans.
Don’t forget to bring a bag to collect all the doubloons – trinkets – that the parades will shower you with, and to dress festively. Purple, green, and gold are popular Mardi Gras colors. And as with any big crowd, decide on a meeting spot should you and your group get separated, since the cell phone lines will likely be overworked. But, above all else, have fun and laissez les bon temps rouler (let the good times roll)!